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State roundup for July 30

3.5 earthquake strikes off Oahu

WAIMANALO, Hawaii (AP) — The U.S. Geological Survey says a magnitude-3.5 earthquake struck off the east coast of Oahu.

Monday’s earthquake was centered about eight miles east of Waimanalo Beach, at a depth of about 21 miles. Officials say it’s not expected to generate a tsunami.

The quake comes as Hawaii is dealing with Tropical Storm Flossie. Central Pacific Hurricane Center Acting Director Tom Evans says tropical storms and earthquakes are not related.

People from Kaneohe to Kapolei reported to USGS that they felt weak to light shaking. There were no immediate reports of damage.

Calif. agency spokesman dies

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Workers at the California Department of Fish and Wildlife are mourning the loss of a spokesman who died while vacationing with his family in Hawaii.

Michael Taugher, 51, was snorkeling off Black Rock in Kaanapali with family members Saturday when he became separated from them.

Taugher was later found unresponsive in the water, and attempts to revive him were unsuccessful.

The cause of his death was unknown but police said no foul play is suspected.

Taugher became an assistant deputy director of communications for the state wildlife agency in May 2012. State Department of Natural Resources Secretary John Laird said Monday that the loss of Taugher is tragic.

He is survived by a wife and two children.

Oahu residents crow about fowl

HONOLULU (AP) — Oahu residents complain the city isn’t doing enough to deal with noisy chickens, citing lax enforcement as a problem.

An ordinance prohibits chicken owners from letting the fowl make noise continuously for 10 minutes or intermittently for half an hour.

Animal Haven was awarded a $60,000 contract in October to deal with chicken complaints. The organization receives an estimated 400 complaints each month. About 60 percent are unresolved and referred to police.

Animal Haven owner Frank DeGiacomo said that under the city contract, he provides traps to those who complain, but he’s not required to capture the noisy chickens.

DeGiacomo said he tries to speak with both sides in a complaint and educate the owners of chickens about the animal nuisance ordinance and how to keep the animals quiet.

“We try to do mediation, try to post solutions,” he said.

Fines range from $50 to up to $1,000 and 30 days in jail for multiple violations.

Police spokeswoman Michelle Yu said it’s unknown how many citations are issued for chickens because they are lumped in with those for barking dogs and other noise complaints.

Residents, however say enforcement is too lax.

Punchbowl resident Kelly Kim said she has lost sleep, as well as tenants, because of noise from a neighbor’s chickens.

“His roosters crow all day,” Kim said. “I’m really frustrated. The renters said it’s too noisy for them. I cannot even sleep well.”

Kim said she has complained to police and to her neighbor, but chickens were still loose. She said she finally hired someone to trap chickens coming onto her property.

The city requires Animal Haven to issue three warnings before forwarding complaints to police. City spokesman Jesse Broder Van Dyke said the ordinance does not require issuing warnings, but Honolulu police recommended the contractor give the warnings to give violators time to dispose of their chickens.

Former Honolulu Councilwoman Rene Mansho said there was no discussion at the time the ordinance was issued about giving violators three warnings. Mansho, who introduced the ordinance in 2000, said her understanding was that police would receive the complaints and enforce the ordinance.


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